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  • The Ambiance

A Conversation with Lito

Updated: Jun 28, 2019

In preparation for our upcoming show with Mestizo Beat, we reached out to Lito to learn about the band we'll be sharing a bill with.

How did the band come together? I’d been playing in some cover bands and been a part of other bands and decided I wanted to start my own project. I got together a group of musicians I’d played with before and we’re all really excited about the music and what we get to do. We’ve played all over California and parts of Nevada, Tahoe, and this summer we get to come up to Oregon and Washington and cover the whole Pacific coast! 

What does the name ‘Mestizo Beat’ mean to the band? Mestizo means blend of cultures which is a great expression of the musicians who make up the band and also the music that we perform. We’re all from different cultures and the music we play is a blend of cultures so it really embodies who we are as a band.

What got you into music? I started playing guitar around age 10 and in my early 20s got into afro/funk/soul and decided wanted to make that kind of music. When the band started writing we thought about what we’d want to listen to and just started writing it.

What's your favorite part of touring? Getting to see new places, meet new people, and try new food! It can be hard to see much of a place because we come in a play the show but we always to to make the most of the time we have and are thankful for whatever experiences we can enjoy.

Have you been to Portland before? Once as a kid, but I've never played there before. I'm excited to come back!

What’s your favorite way to spend your down time? What’s down time? (laughter) I'd say, getting out into nature, going on a hike, going to the beach. Any space that lets my mind relax.

If your band were a drink, what would it be? (Without missing a beat) Mezcal without a doubt. Strong and smokey.

If you could change anything about the industry, what would it be? There’s a lot, but I wish there was more support from the state, like funding anything to do with music creativity: from more programs in schools to something to help the quality musicians who are struggle be able to get by. 

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